The one nation flipping America the bird, and getting away with it

Venezuela only has one big export - oil - and almost no one willing to risk American sanctions in order to buy it. Europe won't defy us, and neither will much of Latin America.

But one nation you probably don't think about will dare to risk sanctions.

At the start of the Venezuelan political crisis last month, Indian media reported that the Asian country continues to be one of the main buyers of Venezuelan crude oil. Indian refiners are still buying more than 400,000 bpd of oil from the troubled Latin American country, which is sitting on the world’s largest crude oil resources.

While the U.S. and many European nations have recognized opposition leader Juan Guaidó as the interim president of Venezuela, India has only limited itself to issuing a statement that “We are of the view that it is for the people of Venezuela to find political solution to resolve their differences through constructive dialogue and discussion without resorting to violence.”

The Indian buyer moved into rupees in order to avoid a problem in payments with the U.S. banking system.
White House National Security Advisor John Bolton tweeted: “Nations and firms that support Maduro’s theft of Venezuelan resources will not be forgotten."

That threat sounds serious...except that India has heard that threat before.

PTI reported the same official saying that the Indian and Chinese companies would be subject to the same sanctions as those in other nations. “Their (India and China) companies will be subject to the same sanctions that everybody else’s are if they engage in those sectors of the economy that are sanctionable, where there were sanctions imposed prior to 2015. And yes, we will certainly be requesting that their oil imports go to zero,” PTI reported citing an unidentified state official.

Obviously this is serious, because America would never issue an empty threat.

India has begun paying Iran for oil in rupees, a senior bank official said on Tuesday, the first such payments since the United States imposed new sanctions against Tehran in November.

Did India flat out ignore a Trump Administration threat?
Yes, they did.
And did Trump do something about it? No, he did not.

So why did India think that they could get away with defying our sanctions.
Because they've heard the threat before.

India could soon be faced with the threat of US sanctions following a controversial $5 billion weapons deal with Russia, a move analysts say poses more of a headache for Washington than it does Delhi.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi finalized the deal, which will see India take possession of a high-tech S-400 missile defense system, during a bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Indian capital New Delhi on Friday.
The deal could potentially open India up to US sanctions under legislation known as Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA)

So did Trump do something about India's defiance of our sanctions threat this time?
No, again, he did not.

Exactly how much credibility with India do you think our sanctions threats have after backing down going on three times?
India just did the math:

Russia, China, NK, Syia, and Iran = U.S. adversaries
Turkey, Pakistan, Myanmar, Iraq, Qatar, Vietnam = Don't like U.S.

Let's see.
U.S. adversaries + Don't like U.S. = Holy Shit. We're running out of countries to be allies with.
America really needs someone to be a "friend" in Asia.
Even if that "friend" doesn't give an f*ck about what you want.

It looks like India just beat Trump, the casino owner, at game theory.

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mimi's picture

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Love is all we have to give.

@mimi
but 1) I was limiting it to Asia, and 2) I believe I still made my point.

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mimi's picture

@gjohnsit

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Love is all we have to give.

Azazello's picture

@mimi

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mimi's picture

@Azazello
... her's and Pence's were having a little chemical reaction. Now one has to figure out what kind of chemical reaction that was, may be a decomposition ?

I liked her speech a lot. Haven't heard it in full yet.

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4 users have voted.

Love is all we have to give.

mimi's picture

@Azazello
Munich Insecurity Conference - Transatlantic differences laid bare at annual defense powwow.

Long a showcase for the solidity of the postwar Western alliance and America’s enduring commitment to European security, this year’s conference has looked more like a transatlantic reality show.

“People are not talking to each other, nor at each other, they are talking through each other,” said Ana Palacio, a former Spanish foreign minister who has been attending the conference for more than 20 years.

::::

But what was most notable about the speech was that the chancellor abandoned her usual caution to speak in frank terms about tensions with the U.S.

“If we’re serious about the transatlantic partnership, it’s not very easy for me as German chancellor to read … that the American department of commerce apparently considers German and European cars to be a threat to the national security of the United States of America,” Merkel said.

As Ivanka Trump looked on from the audience, the German leader added: “Look, we’re proud of our cars and we should be allowed to be. And these cars are built in the U.S. The biggest BMW factory is in South Carolina, not in Bavaria.”

Merkel, who also offered a detailed defense of Germany’s contributions to the NATO alliance, received a standing ovation at the end of the address, which had the tone of a valedictory.

To the predominately European crowd, which like the chancellor is deeply skeptical of Donald Trump’s aggressive approach to foreign policy, Merkel’s words acted like a salve with some listeners declaring it the best speech she’d ever deliver.

The afterglow didn’t last long.

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10 users have voted.

Love is all we have to give.

American business wants cheap indentured Indian engineers and IT people as well as "tech support" phone people. US Pharma depends on Indian production plants (along with Chinese) Sanctions on India would hurt the bottom line on too many businesses.

Is China boycotting Venezuela? Or are they too interested in MidEast Oil? Russia is also trading and providing aid to Venezuela, although I suspect that's mostly to poke a stick in Uncle Sam's eye.

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@The Voice In the Wilderness
India has always been doing such stuff well before they were exporting tech services, and in this case they need the oil. And the US has always had a weird relationship with India, being mostly against Indian policies but at the same time accepting India as the only real democracy in the region and too big to alienate. Its almost as weird as the US's relationship with Pakistan, which is more often than not considered the US's best friend in the region (even surviving Bin Laden).

India and the US have more often than not been on the opposite side on international issues. In cases of colonies vs colonizers, India goes with the former while the US typically went for the latter. In the cold war, India was non-aligned but often sided with Russia. In China-Russia conflicts (eg, Khmer Rouge), India sided with Russia while the US went with China. In the middle east, India was pro-Palestinian and anti-Islamicist, while the US was always pro-Israel and sometimes pro-Islamicist.

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@sny
India was condemned for being "Socialist" and accepting USSR foreign aid. The USA backed Pakistan solely because they were anti-India.

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@sny

They make alliance--and perhaps also make enemies--based upon their own needs and their own agendas--and as Bush the Dimmer was taught to say, "America is addicted to oil."

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@HenryAWallace
"There are no permanent alliances, only permanent interests."

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@The Voice In the Wilderness Sounds like a paraphrase of Disraeli.

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@mweens
England's permanent interest was in keeping any Continental power from getting too strong.
Allying with France against Spain, Spain against France, Sponsoring Garibaldi's rebellion against Austria, allying with De Gaulle against Germany's Vichy puppet state.

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@mweens

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The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01, a Boeing 757 (AA Flight 77) flew into the Pentagon.
If you can't accept these indisputable facts, I can't fake an interest in your opinions about anything else.

@mweens

We have no eternal allies, and we have no perpetual enemies. Our interests are eternal and perpetual, and those interests it is our duty to follow. ... And if I might be allowed to express in one sentence the principle which I think ought to guide an English Minister, I would adopt the expression of Canning, and say that with every British Minister the interests of England ought to be the shibboleth of his policy.

what I "like" about this quote, is that in just a few sentences we have one of the earliest and purest possible statements of the absolution of institutions and the individual humans who are those institutions' agents from any sort of general ethical burden. eventually, this becomes the philosophy whereby the executives of corporations have one and only one proper concern: The shareholders' interests. Anything they do, regardless of its overall human cost, is not only justified, but obligatory upon them, if it will raise the share price one penny. Any other thing that they do (or do not do), regardless of its overall human benefit, is an intolerable (and civilly, and possibly criminally, liable) shirking of their fiduciary duty, if it results in a lower share price than would have resulted had they acted otherwise.

What we end up with is a society in which people are themselves expected to behave with a certain level of ethical concern for the effects of their actions on others; but they are also expected to hire for themselves agents who are explicitly forbidden to behave "ethically" with respect to anything other than their clients' interests. I place that in quotes, because there is nothing particularly ethical about doing anything and everything possible to advance the interests of a client who is paying you. It's more nearly the antithesis of "ethical". Most principles that have ever been asserted as elements of a "professional ethics" are not ethical at all. Indeed, most of them exist and function less to protect the clients of the professionals, than to protect the interests of the professionals themselves, whose incomes depend on their clientele having a fundamental faith that the professionals will indeed advance the clients' interests before their own. (Thus the hullaballoo a few years back when it turned out that certain brokerages were using their high speed trading tech to get their own orders in ahead of their clients' orders, or some such thing.)

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2 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01, a Boeing 757 (AA Flight 77) flew into the Pentagon.
If you can't accept these indisputable facts, I can't fake an interest in your opinions about anything else.

@UntimelyRippd
speech Palmerston invoked an obligation to something other than England's particular interests:

I hold that the real policy of England—apart from questions which involve her own particular interests, political or commercial—is to be the champion of justice and right; pursuing that course with moderation and prudence, not becoming the Quixote of the world, but giving the weight of her moral sanction and support wherever she thinks that justice is, and wherever she thinks that wrong has been done...I say that it is a narrow policy to suppose that this country or that is to be marked out as the eternal ally or the perpetual enemy of England.

Note that he explicitly subordinates "justice and right" to England's "particular interests, political or commercial". So what he's arguing here is that England has no obligation to support an historical ally if that ally is engaged in some sort of wrongdoing with respect to an historical enemy -- that England to the contrary ought to support whichever nation is "right". At the same time, though, he places no particular obligation on England to behave with "justice and right" in respect of her own interests. Quite a remarkable dance, really.

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3 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01, a Boeing 757 (AA Flight 77) flew into the Pentagon.
If you can't accept these indisputable facts, I can't fake an interest in your opinions about anything else.

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

in the context of a fight between lefties and the people running D.C.

It was in the slide presentation, right at the end: "Remember we don't have any permanent allies and we don't have any permanent enemies."

Furious as I was back then about the 2000 election fraud that happened in my state, I said "No. I do have permanent enemies." I couldn't imagine anything George and Jeb Bush could do to make them no longer my enemies. I still can't. Well, maybe if they decided to betray the military and oil and banking interests that their family has represented since at least the early 20th century....

It is, of course, different for nations, because nations last a lot longer than individuals, and can have very different people running them at different times.

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The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

This is wrong on so many levels. Bolton is a sick liar.

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@entrepreneur
remembered it was Bolton so concluded that he was just talking lies and nonsense.

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in Venavuala. RT said some nice things about her.
She is obviously a Putin stooge.

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chuck utzman

TULSI 2020

Azazello's picture

@chuckutzman

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enhydra lutris's picture

@Azazello
some of their water for their people, rather than to let a US soda company have it all. IIRC nothing happened.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@Azazello @Azazello @Azazello Will be the best president! True in any language. Go Tulsi.

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Capitalism has always been the rule of the people by the oligarchs. You only have two choices, eliminate them or restrict their power.

Bollox Ref's picture

B. They've been dealing with all sorts (including the old Soviet Union) for decades.

They're hardly going to stop now. India is too big to fail. And they know that.

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7 users have voted.

Gëzuar!!
from a reasonably stable genius.

jorogo's picture

Pardon the interruption?
Even the source won't tell us, so I won't believe them.

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"If I sit silently, I have sinned." - Mossadegh